Cranwell Opening New Carriage House In July
The new Carriage House draws on the former's 1890s structure, according to a press release on PR Web. The original plans were located in the Boston Public Library; Cutler Associates is the current architect and Hughes Design Associates is doing the interior design.
The building will house 15 queen doubles, two kings and a king suite. It is connected to the Spa at Cranwell by a glass-enclosed, heated walkway.
"We are very excited about re-opening the Carriage House, which had long been a favorite of our year-round guests visiting the Berkshires," said Carl Pratt, general manager, in the release.
Firefighters from 20 departments fought the December 2010 afternoon blaze that gutted the building. Investigators pointed to space heaters set between floors as the likely culprits. No one was injured. The resort almost immediately announced it would rebuild.
Read the entire press release here.
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Cranwell Resort, Spa and Golf Club has launched a nifty app for iPhone and Android. The Cranwell app offers a guide to the hotel's amenities, recommendations and special offers. Plus it features a map of activities in the Berkshires.
"The way that our customers search for and book their vacation experience is shifting," said Norma Probst, director of marketing for the resort. "This new feature will enable us to connect with our guests and prospective visitors before, during and after their stays."
The app, one of 20 hotel and resort apps developed by DeCare Systems Ireland Ltd., offers quick access to real-time reservations and Cranwell phone and email contacts and images of the historic resort. App users can explore all the facilities of the resort in a few easy taps — from information on wining and dining at the hotel's restaurants and bar, to room and suite accommodations.
Users can access sections on the Spa at Cranwell, golfing or skiing, as well as a profile of their conference and wedding facilities. Then they can shoot off an e-mail to tell their friends all about it.
The app also offers an area guide (notably clustered mostly in South County along Route 7) for taverns, dining, shopping, outdoor and cultural activities, hospitals and transportation, along with a Google map to show you how to get there. We're not sure where they're drawing the information, but the North County section is pretty skimpy. The locations do, however, get you not only a location but access to contacts and Web pages.
The "news" section is also sparse, consisting of mainly tweets and retweets from Cranwell. But then it is designed to promote Cranwell and areas of interest to its patrons, not the local or national media.
Cranwell Resort says it partnered with O'Rourke Hospitality's Smart Stay App to provide "a highly specialized service solution for mobile travelers to the Berkshires."
We downloaded the app to try it out and found it very easy to use. If you're coming to the Berkshires and don't know your way around, this is a nice littlemobile concierge. The free app can be downloaded for iPhone, iPad and Android systems.
Looks like Cranwell is out front with offering the area's first mobile application — at least we can't find anyone else who's doing it.
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White Hart Inn For Sale for $5M
SALISBURY, Conn. — The historic White Hart Inn closed its doors abruptly on Tuesday and was placed on the market for $5 million.
The 204-year-old Litchfield County inn was rescued from an uncertain future when Scott Bok, a Manhattan investment banker, and his wife Roxanne purchased it a decade ago.
A feature in Rural Intelligence described how the Boks ordered major renovations last fall to update and reduce the number of guest suites to 15 as well as to expand the restaurant. This renovation followed on the heels of the Boks' 2008 purchase of a 115-acre farm down the road from the White Hart, which they named Twin Lakes Farm.
According to a New York Times article two years ago, the farm had a $3 million price tag and its sole purpose was to provide locally sourced beef (more than 50 cows) to the restaurant portion of the inn. The fate of the farm, where the Boks reside on weekends, is unknown at this point.
No one connected with the inn was available for comment. In a statement sent to the Register Citizen, Bok said it seemed appropriate to close the inn with the quiter winter season coming up and that it was "debt free."
The couple enjoyed operating the inn but "it was also a heavy responsibility and time commitment to oversee a 24-hour, 364-day-a-year enterprise, despite having a young family and full-time job 100 miles away," he stated in the press relesase.
Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation had planned a press conference at the inn on Wednesday that had to be moved to another location.
The inn has been listed with Best & Cavallaro Real Estate in Salisbury. The Register Citizen said those seeking room deposit refunds or with questions on related matters should call 860-435-0030.
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Cranwell Voted Best For Meetings
LENOX, Mass. If you're meeting on the East Coast, Cranwell's the place to go.
That's according to Meetings East Magazine, a leading conference planners publication, which gave Cranwell Resort, Spa and Golf Club its Best of the East Award, the fourth time the resort has been honored with this distinction.
Readers of Meetings East vote annually for their favorite meeting properties on the East Coast based on the following criteria: quality of the meeting space; guest rooms; guest services and amenities; food and beverage service; high-tech services and equipment; recreational facilities and activities; the efficiency and helpfulness of staff; and overall value and experience.
Cranwell has long been a favorite destination for a wide variety of meetings and events for up 200 guests; it recently hosted the annual meeting of the Massachusetts Governors Association and is also used for such social events as proms and weddings.
We can attest to the to lovely atmosphere and dining at the resort, having attended our share of (but not enough) weddings, meetings and dinners in its beautifully appointed dining rooms.
The resort features 15,000 square feet of event space including a spacious ballroom with panoramic hilltop views and a board room in an historic Gilded Age mansion. The property offers complimentary wireless Internet access throughout the resort.
For more information, call 800-272-6935 or visit www.cranwell.com.
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Rooms With A View: Fitzpatrick Buys Wigwam Cabins
The Western Summit on the Mohawk Trail overlooks the city of North Adams.
FLORIDA, Mass. — The old Wigwam Cabins on the Western Summit have been purchased by Nancy Fitzpatrick, adding to her collection of historic properties that include the 1773 Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge.
Fitzpatrick, as LMNO Properties LLC, purchased the cabins, guest house and gift shop from the Berkshire Natural Resources Council on Aug. 13 for $275,000. The deal includes a right of first refusal for the nature conservation group should Fitzpatrick ever decide to sell it.
The council took ownership of the buildings last year, when it purchased 37 acres for $470,000 with plans to add it to some 730 acres along the Hoosac Range to conserve the land and restore a three-mile long trail.
The buildings and just under 4 acres were put on the market for $350,000 this spring.
"I'd been eyeballing the cabins longingly for years. I hated the thought that they might disappear," said Fitzpatrick in a news release announcing the purchase. "This style of roadside architecture, from the early days of automobile travel, is underappreciated and endangered. I can't wait to get going on this project."
The site has been a tourist destination with three-state views since the early part of the last century. It will be managed by the Porches Inn in North Adams, another historic property developed out of old houses on River Street by Fitzpatrick and and Williams College alum Jack Wadsworth.
Fitzpatrick is renovating the vintage cabins and will operate them seasonally beginning in spring 2011. She's interested in American road tripping and the hotels and motels that were built during the development of the Interstate Highway System.
Guests at the cabins will have easy access to the trail system being undertaken by the Berkshire Natural Resource Council that will ultimately connect the Florida and Savoy Mountain state forests and include a major hiking trail, the envisioned 100-mile Mahican-Mohawk Trail for Northern Berkshire County. This trail will start at the Wigwam site, ending at Spruce Hill, in the Savoy Mountain State Forest. The anticipated completion date for the trail is in June 2011.
"The Wigwam will capture the imagination and spirit of adventure of its guests, by recalling the nostalgia of bygone days of motor-touring on Route 2," said Bruce Finn, general manager of the Porches and Red Lion inns, in the press release. "The Wigwam Cabins will give travelers access to the Hoosac Range Trail, and — ultimately — the Mahican-Mohawk Trail. It is also a short, five-mile drive to the center of North Adams, Mass MoCA, and The Porches Inn through scenic winding mountain roads, and just a bit longer to Williamstown. Guests will enjoy breathtaking views from their rustic cabin settings, with easy access to all there is to do in the area."
Guests of the Wigwam will have full use of all guest amenities at the Porches, including the hotel's year-round pool, hot tub and exercise facilities. The property will be renovated with each cabin or guestroom offering a private bath and shower. The cabins will feature comfortable furnishings, wood stoves, refrigerators and coffee-making facilities.
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